Abu Dhabi: The Indian missions in the UAE on Tuesday began the more than two-year-long celebrations of ‘India @75’ — the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence.
The Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi and the Indian Consulate in Dubai will organise a series of events and digital initiatives to mark the occasion, Pavan Kapoor, the Indian Ambassador to the UAE, announced at a virtual event on Tuesday. In India, the celebrations were launched by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Indian Embassy chose March 23 to officially launch the events as it is observed as one of the Martyrs’ Days in India to pay homage to three freedom fighters — Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru and Sukhdev Thapar — who were hanged to death by the British government on this day in 1931.
On March 12, Modi flagged off the ‘Padyatra’ (Freedom March) from Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad, and led the curtain-raiser to ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ (Elixir of Energy of Independence), popularly known as ‘Amrit Mahotsav’.
Celebration of people
The celebrations are running from 75 weeks prior to the 75th Indian Independence Day on August 15, 2022, and will extend up to the next Independence Day on August 15, 2023.
The Indian ambassador to UAE said: “‘India@75’ will be celebrated as a ‘Jan-Utsav’ or the ‘celebration of the people’. The celebrations will be inspired by five pillars as a guiding force, namely the ‘Freedom Struggle’, ‘Achievements at 75’, ‘Ideas at 75’, ‘Actions at 75’ and ‘Resolves at 75’.”
Kapoor said India achieved independence due to the collective efforts of many great people and the ‘India@75’ celebrations are meant to cherish the hard-earned freedom.
“The Government of India aspires to make the ‘Amrit Mahotsav’ a collective celebration for all fellow Indians, a ‘Jan Utsav’. We, therefore, urge all of the 3.4 million Indians residing here in the UAE to come forward and partner with the Embassy of India in Abu Dhabi and our Consulate in Dubai in participating and organising such events.”
Week of Indian culture
“We will also work towards organising a ‘Week of Indian Culture’ all over the UAE sometime next year, by which time, hopefully, there will also be much greater in-person participation possible at events,” he said.
The details of all the forthcoming activities for the ‘India@75’ celebrations will be shared in advance through the websites and social media platforms of the missions and the media.
“In this regard, we look forward to the overwhelming support of our large Indian community in the UAE, as well as from various Indian community associations, Indian business houses and most importantly from the younger generation of thousands of Indian students who are residing in the UAE to celebrate the ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’, the ambassador added.
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Various events have also been planned, which will be held at the India pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai.
The inaugural event on Tuesday was organised in association with the Private International English School (Bhavans) in Abu Dhabi. School students presented various cultural performances and paid homage to the freedom fighters during the virtual event that was streamed live on the missions’ social media platforms.
NK Ramachandran Menon, chairman, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Middle East; Sooraj Ramachandran, vice-chairman; Divya Rajesh Ramachandran, director; Girija Baiju, principal; and Suresh V Balakrishnan, vice-principal of the school, also participated.